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June 02, 2003 - Image 3

Resource type:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 2003-06-02

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N EW S The Michigan Daily - Monday, June 2, 2003 - 3
City undergoes summer construction


By Trista Van Tine
For the Daily
Some Ann Arbor residents who have
noticed extensive construction in progress in
the area say it has become an inconvenience.
"I think that they are taking too long to do each
section. Parking is also more difficult now that
they have blocked off the roads - sometimes it
takes me 30 minutes or more to find a place to
park," University alum Lynn Scruggs said.
Project Manager of the Street Resurfacing Pro-
gram Don Todd, said as a result of the Resurfacing
Program, construction is being done on 50 streets
and will last until late October.
Todd, who is currently overseeing work on
Fourth Avenue, First Street and Ashley Street said,
"We don't do too much detouring. The drivers and
pedestrians have been very cooperative, despite
the inconveniences we have caused."
He added that while they are a little
behind schedule due to the rainy weather, all
projects should be completed very close to
their scheduled times.
Local resturaunt manager Josh Kamradt said he
also feels the construction is inconvenient.

"I don't want to travel downtown anymore
because of all the construction. Everyday there
is a new detour and I am sick of getting lost in
a city that I know," Kamradt said.
In response to questions concerning the
problems that some residents said the construc-
tion is causing, Project Director with Down-
town Development Authority Adrian Iraola
said, "People have been informed well in
advance of the inconveniences that the con-
struction is causing. They are relatively minor
inconveniences, and in the long run the work
we are doing is more beneficial for everyone."
Iraola is in charge of work being done on
State Street, North University Avenue, and
Liberty Street.
He said they are installing new streetlights to
have the sidewalks and general area lit at night
so that it is safer for residents. He added the
work in this area is on schedule and should be
completed July 14.
The Plymouth Road/U.S. 23 Interchange is
also undergoing construction, Steve Bower said
,Manager of the Michigan Department of
Transportation's Service Center in Brighton.
"It has caused some congestion, but we are

adding a couple of loop ramps and renovating
existing ramps to improve access from the freeway
onto Plymouth Road and vice versa,"he said.
Another site of major construction is on
the Broadway bridges over the Huron River
and Depot Street. Senior project manager of
the Broadway area construction Michael
Nearing said, "We are replacing and upgrad-
ing the bridges as well as reworking Broad-
way Park and reconstructing Depot Street
from State to Broadway."
"We are in phase two on the bridge reconstruc-
tion which is rebuilding the south halves of both
bridges. This work should be done at the end of
the summer, then we will tear down the north
sides and reconstruct them - directing traffic to
the completed south ends," Nearing said.
"We are working on Broadway Park to
make it more desirable and usable to the
general public. Broadway Park is the area
between the two bridges. We are cleaning it
and putting lighting in," he added.
Nearing said that the total project is
scheduled to be completed in the fall of
2004 and added, "Most of the feedback we
have gotten is pretty positive."

School of Art and Design/LSA junior Mollie Edgar -
participates early Saturday morning in a 24-hour art
show organized by school of Art and Design/LSA /.... .,'
senior Jason Polan at the 555 Gallery. , YW ITER
Task force created to evaluate
climate for LGBT community

By Sanantha Wbll
Daily Staf Reporter
A new study by the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force,
in a survey of 14 campuses, indicates that one-third of LGBT
students have experienced harassment in the past year while
20 percent said they feared for their safety.
Frederic MacDonald-Dennis, Office of LGBT Affairs
director, said the increase is reflected on the University's
campus and that the number of reported incidents have
increased significantly from last year. He said he is
unsure whether this is due to more hate incidents actual-
ly occuring or the fact that more people are aware they
can report them. He added that hate incidents on this
campus are still widely underreported.
"Unfortunately, a lot of LGBT people still feel uncomfort-
able," MacDonald-Dennis added.
In response to the issue, the University recently created a
task force charged with evaluating the existing climate on
campus in order to ensure that equal safety and treatment are
available for all members of the University community.
Organized by University Provost Paul Courant, the Task
Force on the Campus Climate for Transgender, Bisexual, Les-
bian and Gay Faculty, Staff, and Students was created as a
result of student demands asking for a reexamination of LGBT
student conditions with an emphasis on transgender students.
"The University community and our world is not as
people like to think that it is," Bruce Frier said, chair of
the new committee.
The task force lists its charges as examining the impact of
changes made since earlier reports, reviewing current Univer-
sity policies to ensure that all members of the community are
supported and protected from discrimination, harassment and
assault, and developing recommendations to improve the cam-
pus climate for LGBT students, faculty and staff.
In addition, although not part of its official charge,
many representatives from the LGBT community as
well as committee members would like gender identity
included in the University by-laws as another area

"The University community and
our world is not as people would
like to think that it is."
- Bruce Frier
Task Force committee chair
where discrimination is not to be tolerated.
"The committee seems to be generally agreed that a change
in the bylaw would be desirable," Frier said.
The task force plans to assess the University climate
by using a variety of media and methods including
launching a website, surveying students and conducting
personal interviews.
"We're looking for salient data and salient quota-
tions," Frier added.
One of the driving concerns brought to the attention
of the task force is the need for increased sensitivity
training with regards to LGBT issues for all University
community members. They find this is especially true
for Department of Public Safety officers, University
Health Services staff, students within the Greek system
and the staff of campus Residence Halls.
Although the University has an anti-discrimination policy
that helps to create a level of security and safety for students,
representatives from the LGBT community are concerned that
there is still harassment and discrimination within the campus
community that needs to be addressed.
"While all of that support is in place, there is also a
level of intolerance that does exist at U of M," Jeff
Souva said, co-chair of the LGBT commission of the
Michigan Student Assembly.
But the members of the task force are optimistic about their
mission and emphasized that this is the beginning of a
process, not the end.
"We hope that by our collective cleverness and our
persuasive abilities that we will be able to make some
progress," Frier said.

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